Michigan State’s hitting and pitching are best in the Big Ten, and the Spartans are coming off their first three-game sweep of archrival Michigan since 1955.

All that has them believing they can make a run at their first conference championship since 1979.

The Spartans have had only nine winning seasons since 1990 and finished higher than fifth in the Big Ten just five times since 1988.

Michigan State is 15-5 going into this weekend’s series at Iowa.

Jake Boss Jr. saw potential when he arrived as coach in 2009. There are new hitting and pitching facilities. Houston Astros owner and MSU graduate Drayton McLane put up $4 million to remake the Spartans’ 2,500-seat ballpark.